Ever feel like you say YES to something and then wonder just moments later what in the world you were thinking? Yeah, me too.
Like that one time I bought mom jeans and then looked in the mirror when I got home and thought, “Yeeeaaaah, that’s not gonna happen.”
Or the time I signed up to chaperone my first grader’s field trip and realized once I got there (at 9 a.m.) that I didn’t have enough stamina (or coffee) to handle ALL of those children. (First graders are animals, y’all!).
Now obviously these examples are pretty low stakes, but nevertheless I have experienced this same “YES-NO pendulum” with fostering. And you wanna know why? Even though I hate to admit it, I like my comfortable life!
I like the fact that I can now buy beautiful, blue, tufted chairs that (70% of the time) won’t get boogers or food on them.
I also like the fact that I can now go to the park and pretty much ignore all of my children because none of them are a threat to themselves, AND they don’t need me to be a swing-pusher. (There is a God!)
So when I think of fostering, it doesn’t seem like a step forward in my life; it seems like a giant step backwards. So why am I doing it then?
Simple. I’m saying YES to God.
This may sound funny, especially if you’re unsure of the whole “God thing”; and truthfully, if I had said this to my former self six years ago, I would’ve raised an eyebrow too. BUT, I’ve learned a few things since then, and one such thing is this:
It’s easy to OBEY God when you’re building a relationship with him.
Is this groundbreaking? Not really. But for a woman who is a tad lot rebellious, I found this discovery surprising. But it’s been so true!
“Those who obey God’s word truly show how completely they love him. That is how we know we are living in him. Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did.” (1 John 2:5-6).
And how did Jesus live?
He was good.
He was kind.
He loved everyone.
He broke bread with everyone.
He forgave everyone.
He was the first to draw the line (John 8:6-7),
the first to help the least of these (Matthew 25:45),
and THAT’S why I follow him.
It’s not because I have to; it’s because I WANT to.
Living like Jesus pushes me beyond my selfishness and deeper into my faith — a faith that has moved beyond the abstract and into obedience. A faith that has prompted me to answer the call to foster (Isaiah 1:17).
This means, then, that my choice has less to do with the fact that I understand abandonment (although that’s very true) and more to do with the freedom I have received from abandonment: God has taught me, oh so lovingly, that he has adopted me! (Galatians 4:6-7). And friends, this has made all the difference.
I am no longer a slave to my pain; I am an heir to the most high king! And because I understand this, I can now go forth, armed and protected, ready to do battle for him, because his power and truth are living in me (Ephesians 6:13-17).
So even when I doubt, even when my selfishness rages and I’d rather ignore my own three children than take care of someone else’s (just being honest), I remember who God is and how much he loves me, and THIS is what helps me say YES to foster care once again.
So what is God calling you to today? How is he lovingly nudging you toward a CALL TO ACTION?
It may not be foster care, but it is something, and that something matters! I humbly pray, then, that this post stirs up your heart and challenges you toward the uncomfortable. That “uncomfortable” may mean investigating who God is further, or it might mean giving more time to your community, family, or church. Whatever it is, just say YES! I promise you it’ll be the best YES you’ve ever given.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28).